Marshal: Resident smoking inside accidentally ignited blanket, caused small Charleston duplex fire

Marshal: Resident smoking inside accidentally ignited blanket, caused small Charleston duplex fire
The scene of the house fire Tuesday (Source: CFD)

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - The Charleston fire department is warning residents after a small duplex fire Tuesday night was caused by a smoking resident.

Firefighters responded to the structure on Grove Street just before 10 p.m. and found a small fire on the exterior of the home, Charleston fire department chief fire marshal Mike Julazadeh said. The fire was quickly extinguished and one person was hospitalized as a result.

Fire marshals determined a resident of the duplex was smoking and accidentally lit a blanket on fire. The person thought they had successfully put the fire out on the blanket and threw it away while it was still smoldering. The blanket then reignited and spread the fire to the duplex, Julazadeh said.

The fire department issued the following tips for people who smoke

• Use caution when smoking, always utilize and appropriate ashtray while smoking.
• Properly discard smoking materials. 
• When you discover a fire or smoke from an unknown source, evacuate the home and then call 911 from a safe location. 
• Install and maintain smoke alarms throughout the home.
• Smoke alarms should be tested monthly and the batteries changed at least once a year.
• Local fire departments will install smoke alarms and batteries for free. 
• Plan, prepare and practice a home escape plan.

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